With a Grateful Prayer and a Thankful Heart: 9/6/09 - 9/13/09

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Late Summer Blooms

Thus musing in a woodland nook
Each flower is as a written book.
And rich the stores of holy thought
That by these blossoms fair are brought.

The grass withers and the flowers fall,
but the word of our God stands forever.
Isaiah 40:8

Show and Tell Friday ~ Holtzschwamm Church Plate

Over the past several years, I have done extensive genealogy research on both my fathers line and my husbands fathers line. It was hard work but very rewarding as piece by piece a clearer picture of our ancestors emerged.
I was so excited to find this commemorative plate on eBay. It has great significance in my family history. My ancestors emigrated from the German Palatinate in 1717. They left persecution as Mennonites and arrived in the young colony of Pennsylvania, settling first in Germantown, moving on to Lancaster and then settling for many generations in York County.
The plate features Holtzschwamm Church (now known as Paradise Lutheran and Reformed Church) that dates back to 1775 and got its name from its location . Though the church is situated on a high elevation, much of the valley was a vast, woody swamp.
Holtzschwamm means woody swamp.
The first church was a log cabin building erected in the center of
the old graveyard.
(See the open area in the above picture)
The church in the above photo is the third one and was
erected in 1849 at a cost of $2,800.00.
For a time the building served two congregations ~
Lutheran and German Reformed
My forth Great-grandfather served as an Elder of the
Reformed Consistory in 1838.He and his wife are buried in this churchyard cemetery as are his son Jonas and many other family members.

His father, Johannes (my fifth Great-Grandfather) is here as well.
Born 1758, died 1814

One of the entrance gates to the graveyard.

Interior of the Building
including a potbelly stove (one of 4 used for heating)
A portrait of Moses Bentzel, the designer of the building
The organ (still in working condition)
One Sunday each fall, the building is opened and there is a special service held. (last pic)
Above photo taken October 2007

Show and Tell
Click above button to enjoy more Show and Tell with Kelli!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

First Day of Senior Year ~ Class of 2010

such a bright smile...

Do you know how hard it is to get a back-to-school pic
of a seventeen year old at 6:40 AM?!?
This is her expression before I made a funny comment
I knew would make her laugh:

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

First Day of School Calls for Chocolate Chip Pizza

Keri is beginning 1st grade and Noah is entering kindergarten and since they live close by I thought it would be a great time for sharing a treat and hearing about their day.
My thoughts are also with our NY little ones. Ryan is beginning 1st grade today as well and Brenna is going to preschool for the first time.

I remembered a recipe I made many, many times as my children were growing up. It adapted from a recipe I clipped from The Philadelphia Inquirer back in July 1994.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Pizza

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 1/2 cup flour

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

In mixer, combine margarine, peanut butter,sugars, vanilla and egg and mix until light and fluffy.

Stir in flour to make a soft dough. Stir in chocolate chips.

Press into pizza pan and bake for 20-25 minutes at 375 degrees.

Sweet Family Time

We had a wonderful visit yesterday from my sister Carol, her daughters Chrissy and Toni, Toni's boyfriend Joe, Chrissy's baby, Olivia and my mom.
We ate together and giggled together as we love to do.
Me, Joe &Toni

Joe & Toni

Chrissy, Me, Carol, our Mom, John, Livvy, Joe and Toni.

Sweet Olivia playing with her Mom-Mom and Granny

Carol loving Olivia in her favorite football team jersey.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Birthday, Biscotti and Broken Belongings

My dear son-in-law celebrated a birthday a few days ago and I wanted to make some biscotti for him to have with his morning coffee. He is a coffee connoisseur and a lover of cookies. The day of his birthday, however, my oven was not working. I am very thankful to say it is now working!

I can't be sure of what was ailing the oven but I think I have a clue. One evening as we were eating dinner we heard a strange high-pitch sound coming from the control panel on the back of the stove. It hummed for a minute or two and then stopped. I had been steaming corn on-the-cob on the back burner and though there was a lid on the pot, I am wondering if moisture got into the control panel and caused it to malfunction.

My husband pulled the stove out to investigate but there was no response. (The stove top continued to work). Thinking I would be using the toaster oven and making smallish meals for the foreseeable future we decided several days later to give it one more try.
To our great joy, it worked!
Perhaps it just needed to dry out.
whatever... I am back in business in the kitchen :)

This story reminds me of what happened to Abbey a couple of weeks ago. She was using her ipod and accidentally dropped it into the dogs water bowl. How sad she was! Even though it was not fully immersed and she immediately pulled it out, it was not working. She googled for information as to what to do and several suggestions were to just wait for it to dry out. That is just what she did and after several days it was working. How happy she is!

Below is a recipe for Chocolate Anise Biscotti from one of my favorite chefs ~ Giada de Laurentiis
Begin by creaming together butter and sugar.
Add eggs one at a time.
Add dry ingredients just until combined.
Form into a 16" x 3" log.
After the first baking.
Allow to cool and slice into 1/2" cookies.
Bake another 15 minutes.
I added some melted chocolate.

Chocolate Anise Cookies

Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis

about 2 dozen


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon ground anise seed
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Line a heavy large baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl to blend. Using an electric mixer, beat the sugar and butter in a large bowl to blend. Beat in the eggs 1 at a time. Add the flour mixture and beat just until blended. Add the ground anise seed and mix well. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Form the dough into a 16-inch-long, 3-inch-wide log. Transfer the log to the prepared baking sheet. Bake until light golden, about 30 minutes. Cool 30 minutes.

Place the log on the cutting board. Using a serrated knife, cut the log on a diagonal into 1/2- to 3/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange the cookies cut side down on the baking sheet. Bake the cookies until pale golden, about 15 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a rack and cool completely.


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